coraa: (pocketwatch)
I love steampunk, but, contrary to a lot of common steampunk tropes, I'm a lot more fond of Edwardian and Roaring Twenties steampunk than Victorian steampunk. Well, and I think that medieval/renaissance clockpunk is pretty awesome, too.

It may just be that I look better in those clothes -- walking dresses, flapper attire, and cotehardies all suit me better than most Victorian fashion.

This may also play into my fondness for Fullmetal Alchemist.

(I also like anachrotech that isn't completely focused on America and Europe. I remember a fantastic Heian steampunk outfit. And wouldn't that be a great manga -- kids in clockwork giant robots?)

(This is on my mind because I'm attending "Steampunk University" this weekend. Geek geek geek.)
coraa: (steampunk)
I covet this skirt like BURNING.

I can't afford it (right now, anyway), but it's perfect.
coraa: (steampunk)
Five Thoughts on the Popularity of Steampunk:

A lot of kids in today’s steampunk music & style scene used to identify with the goth aesthetic — and are pleasantly surprised to discover that normal adults seem intrigued by this new thing rather than alarmed. Well, yeah. People think of goths as weirdoes who take vampires too seriously, and therefore they can’t help being worried on some level that a crazy goth might, you know, want to make them bleed. Whereas steampunks are — what? Weirdoes who take pocket-watches too seriously? What are they gonna do, vehemently tell you what time it is?
coraa: (steampunk)
I need a new jacket, having lost (sob!) my Pava's black leather trench. Alas, poor coat.

I need a hat, because otherwise my nose will burn.

Would it be totally ridiculous and steamrat-ish to buy a brown linen duster (I want a new leather jacket, too, but it's not the season for a heavy coat yet) and a, um, a fedora? I kind of have a hankering for a Victorian lady adventuress persona, a la Amelia Peabody, or Indiana Jones-meets-Gwendolyn Fairfax-by-way-of-Cordelia Naismith. And a tan or brown linen jacket of a sufficiently unassuming cut would go okay either with a t-shirt and jeans or with a walking skirt and perhaps some sort of bodice. I realize that the fedora is a bit cliche, what with the new Indy movie, but... but. It's awfully tempting, and I'm excited to have a fashion paradigm that's so appealing.

(I am trying to convince [livejournal.com profile] jmpava that a tasteful steampunk decorating theme would be awesome for the new place. Emphasis on tasteful -- I don't want anything garish or cluttered-looking myself, and random gears stuck everywhere is passé -- but it seems to be a plausible way to bridge his desire for the simplicity of glass and black metal and my desire for something a bit more old-fashioned with wood and colors. He isn't biting yet, though. Of course, given how many things we saw at Uwajimaya and went 'omg, that's awesome!', we might go more that route, though I think I'd feel like a poseur going too heavy on the Japanese influences.)

I should also probably get more long hippy skirts, since I have exactly one and I wear it so often I'm going to wear it out, but I'm sure I'll have ample opportunity for that at the umpty-million street fairs in the summer. Or I could probably make one -- the pattern is fairly simple -- though I do not as currently have a sewing machine and there isn't really room in the budget to buy one until we've got necessary house-ish things out of the way first.

Fashion is a lot more fun when I'm worrying about what I want to look like and not at all about what's in style, though I still don't go for the extremes -- I'm too introverted a person to want to be stared at.
coraa: (steampunk)
I don't miss Food Network enough to actually order cable... but man, I could watch it all day when it happens to be available. (Which is probably another good reason not to get cable....) I am so hungry for baked fettuccini in asiago sauce now.

Anyway, the Victorian Technological Exposition, a.k.a. Steampunk Ball! It was a blast. I was glad that I got to go with a bunch of friends.

Funniest moment: we drive up, and are peering in the window going 'are we at the right place?' Then we realize that we can see [livejournal.com profile] triath... teaching the dancing. I was like, "She wasn't helping to organize this! ...was she?" [livejournal.com profile] jmpava pointed out that it figured; you can always find [livejournal.com profile] triath in the middle of the excitement. (Really, what happened was that the original dance teacher bailed, and since [livejournal.com profile] triath and [livejournal.com profile] istgut have experience, they volunteered, which was awesome.) I danced a little with [livejournal.com profile] donaithnen and then repaired upstairs to hang out and watch.

There were several games (I unsurprisingly sat out -- see above re: shy girl -- but had a lot of fun watching from the balcony), a technological pavilion with a Thinking Machine, an electricity device, a stereoscope, and a set of prints of clockwork insects, and snacklets and drinks including absinthe. (The absinthe was even served 'properly' -- ie, a little was poured in the glass, then a sugar cube was placed on a slotted spoon over the glass and then icewater is dripped over the spoon and sugar cube to dissolve the sugar into the drink. This brings some of the dissolved flavorings in the absinthe out of solution, giving the absinthe a milky appearance.) I quite enjoyed the absinthe, but it was met with a mixed reception from our group. ;)

Everyone was dressed brilliantly -- some more Victorian than others, some more steamy than others, but pretty much everyone got into it and looked awesome.

Pics -- VERY image heavy )
coraa: (smug)
1300 words tonight on Feather in the Gears, despite stomach cramps and general work-tiredness. Lai has just agreed to repair Evije's broken thing at a lower-than-usual price, with repercussions that neither of them are going to see until it's too late. I think. I hope.

Time. For. Bed. But: hooray.
coraa: (steampunk)
I know a number of people reading this are going both to MMP and to the Steampunk Ball. Would any of you be interested in doing some steampunky craftwork with me while we're in Denver? I've got gears to spare in a variety of sizes, leather scraps and leather punches, glass beads and pieces of polished semi-precious stone, and some medium-sized bits of velvet, along with glass/metal epoxy and beading tools (good for affixing gears to things if you don't want to use glue). I think I have some very simple handsewing supplies (like needle/thread and pins) too, though I'd have to find them and confirm. (Nothing you'd want to sew a garment with, but enough to make, say, a pouch, or to stitch gears onto an existing piece.)

Among my projects will be retrofitting a hideous parasol into a steamy parasol, making some jewelry pieces, and making over a Duck Hunt gun into a pirate's aether pistol (not to self: find small glass globe; if you'd been thinking, self, you would have grabbed a couple of clear glass tree ornaments when they were on sale, but no such luck). (If I can find an appropriate stick for it, I'll also be making [livejournal.com profile] jmpava a walking stick, but no luck so far on that either.) I'd love some company!
coraa: (steampunk)
The boy and I should have been out the door and heading to his father's a while ago, but I can't really regret the delay for two reasons:

1) A few days ago, I bought a lot of watch parts on eBay, and they arrived. They're astonishingly beautiful -- tiny perfect brass and silver gears, frozen-in-time watchfaces, long coiling mainsprings, rounded glass watchfaces. I'll be able to make all kinds of interesting things for my steampunk costume, and probably for other art projects too.

2) I had a highly entertaining (and fairly plotty!) dream. It's beginning to fade, so I will preserve it for posterity )
coraa: (steampunk)
Here I am again, asking for book recs!

Specifically, I have a jones on lately for steampunk or gaslamp fantasy (or clockpunk, or neo-Victoriana, or steampulp, or Voyages Extraordinares, or whatever you like to call it). You may at this point be asking me what I consider to be steampunk; unfortunately, I'm pretty lassiez-faire about genre definitions, so usually what I mean is 'the things I point to when I say steampunk.' So you can do the same -- if you think it's steampunk, that's totally cool. (I'm also a tagger, not a sorter, which means I'm perfectly happy calling something science fiction and fantasy, or whatever.) So if you think it maybe could be steampunk, go ahead and suggest it. (If you want a vague stab at a definition, I'd say that steampunk is science fiction with an archaic sensibility and aesthetic -- usually but not always Victorian, and which may or may not actually be set during the historical time period in question -- which may or may not also have significant fantasy elements. I actually think that one of the appealing things about steampunk is that it doesn't so much blur the line between science fiction and fantasy as considers the distinction irrelevant altogether, but maybe that's just me.)

Things I have read that I consider steampunk/gaslamp fantasy:

  • Girl Genius, by Phil Foglio
  • The Grand Ellipse, by Paula Volsky
  • Perdido Street Station and sequels, by China Mieville
  • His Dark Materials, by Philip Pullman
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events, by Lemony Snicket
  • Fullmetal Alchemist, by Hiromu Arakawa
  • The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, by Alan Moore
  • The Diamond Age, by Neal Stephenson

Any suggestions? I'm looking mostly for books and comics/manga, though if you have any movie (or TV or music) recs, go ahead and mention them too.

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